A 19-year-old man has been charged with manslaughter in the deaths of Edmonton Police Service constables Travis Jordan and Brett Ryan, who were gunned down in March while responding to a family dispute at an apartment complex in the city’s northwest.
Dennis Okeymow has been charged with three counts of manslaughter and three counts of negligence causing death in the deaths of Jordan, Ryan and 16-year-old Roman Shewchuk, Edmonton police said Wednesday.
Shewchuk fatally shot the police officers and shot and injured his mother before using the same gun to kill himself.
In a news release, police said Okeymow trafficked the firearm used in the police shooting and a separate shooting at a nearby pizza restaurant four days before the officers were killed. Court documents show the firearm was a rifle.
Okeymow is also charged with two counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm in relation to the shooting at the pizza restaurant and in the shooting that injured Shewchuk’s mother.
He also faces other charges, including firearms trafficking, unauthorized possession of a firearm, possession of a restricted firearm with ammunition, and charges related to drug trafficking.
Jordan, 35, and Ryan, 30, were killed in what police called an “ambush” after they were called after midnight on March 16 to the Baywood Park Apartments complex near 114th Avenue and 132nd Street.
The officers, who were responding to a reported family dispute, were gunned down as they knocked on the door.
Police said gunfire erupted before Jordan and Ryan entered the apartment suite, incapacitating them. The teen and his mother then reportedly struggled over the gun, before shots were fired.
Police said the 16-year-old also shot and seriously injured his 55-year-old mother before using the gun to kill himself.
Shewchuk died at the scene. His mother continues to recover from her injuries, police said Tuesday.
Jordan and Ryan were declared dead in hospital. Neither officer fired his firearm.
The teen had no prior criminal record but police had been called to the home before, including for a previous mental health complaint.
The 16-year-old is also believed to be responsible for shooting a Pizza Hut employee four days earlier.
On March 12, a 55-year-old man working at a Pizza Hut near the apartment complex was left with serious injuries after being shot by an assailant.
The clerk who was shot, Rich Albert, suffered a traumatic brain injury and lost his left eye.
Early in the investigation, detectives determined that a bullet cartridge casing recovered from the restaurant shooting was a forensic match to the firearm recovered at the apartment where the officers were killed.
‘Complex and tragic’
In Wednesday’s news release, police said that following several months of extensive investigation, investigators had confirmed that Okeymow trafficked the firearm used in both shootings directly to the 16-year-old shooter.
Police said officers searched Okeymow’s residence, vehicles and cell phone on Nov. 23.
Okeymow was arrested without incident at his home. A stolen loaded handgun, ammunition, illegal drugs, $10,000 in cash and other items indicative of drug trafficking were seized from the home, police said.
“In my 20 years in this career, this is the most complex and tragic file I have worked on,” Staff Sgt. Eric Stewart said in a statement.
“It’s heartbreaking that the trafficking of a firearm has led to multiple deaths and life-altering injuries.
“The trauma suffered by the impacted families as a result of this one simple transaction is unthinkable.”
Okeymow is set to make his next court appearance Friday.